Posted in Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Miscellaneous, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

Mars looks fun

Hello everybody,

If you ignore Matt Damons’ questionable behaviour in recent media which includes colourful quotes exhibiting racism and homophobia amongst other things , if you ignore all that  .. The Martian is not a bad movie.

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It has the usual set-up of a Ridley Scott space movie. Key ingredients:

  • Space (very important)
  • Only white Americans go to (and survive in) space (this movie at least showed China has improved technology but still , only white Americans go to and survive in space)
  • Some tense and slow motion (because Space) action scenes

I should say , about 1 hour and 30 minutes into this movie my husband asked the very valid question :

Where are the f***ing aliens?

It’s not that kind of movie.

Instead, Mark Watney (Damon) and his crew attempt to leave Mars when their mission goes awry. The crew start to board their rocket (I’m sure there’s another word for their transport) , but leave Mark behind after he’s struck by a satellite dish and presumed dead.

Turns out, being struck by a satellite dish does not kill you and so Mark is left on Mars to fend for himself.

What follows is the laid back and often funny story of his survival. Using his background in botany, physics, chemistry and every other science (because he’s a man and he knows everything – don’t even get me started on female leading roles! ) , Mark manages to keep himself alive growing his own food whilst the people on Earth try to figure out how to reach him on time.

Thankfully, this space movie also has a great soundtrack for once. This personally made it 90% better for me.

I’d encourage you to watch this, even if you’ve hated every other Ridley Scott movie or indeed don’t know who he is .

Enjoy the weekend folks!

Posted in Life, Miscellaneous, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

The Jinx : the Life and Deaths of Robert Durst 

Two blog posts in a week ! Aren’t you lucky. 

You can quite easily google what happened to Robert Durst, but for those of you who are lazy or have not yet watched it , I am about to spoil it all.

The Jinx is a documentary series about the case of Bob Durst who was a suspect in the disappearance of his wife in 1982, a suspect in the murder of his good friend Susan Berman in 2000, and a suspect (later admitting) in the killing of Morris Black; shooting him and dismembering the body. 

Durst was tried for the murder of Morris Black but the good jurors of Texas gave a Not Guilty verdict after it was felt the defense proved he was acting in self defence. As the body was only dismembered after the shooting, the jury didn’t judge Durst for this . Apparently dismembering a body is normal when you panic. 

Soon after the trial, director Andrew Jarecki decided to make a movie about Durst and gained an unlikely fan.

After seeing the film, Durst reached out to Jarecki and asked to be interviewed to give his own account of events; the Jinx is born!

What follows is a detailed investigation featuring interviews with virtually everyone involved in the case as well as Durst himself who is , in my opinion, one of the most chilling individuals I have ever seen (and that includes my 5th grade teacher ). 

In the finale of the series, Jarecki and his producers come across letters written by Durst to Susan Berman. The handwriting is an exact match to the anonymous letter sent to the police after Susan’s death , detailing Susan’s address and the word ‘cadaver’. Jarecki confronts Durst with this information. Durst denies it but appears visibly shaken on camera. 

Off camera, Durst excuses himself to go to the toilet. He forgets the microphone is still plugged in. 

We hear him say :

“What the hell did I do ? Killed them all, of course ” 

Durst was arrested less than 24hrs after the documentary aired. Jarecki is now reportedly under investigation for withholding some of this information until the show aired publicly. The case continues.

If you’re a fan of crime documentaries or criminal investigations of any kind, you will not be disappointed with this! 

Happy viewing 🙂 

Posted in Book reviews, Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Miscellaneous, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews, Travel

Watch, Read , Listen – Part 2

Hello friends , 

This week I urge you to do at least one of these things because , in my opinion, they are all amazing . And because you’re here and my opinion is the only one that matters ; you should listen to me. 

Watch ‘Frank’

  
An interesting little movie based loosely on Chris Sieveys’ character Frank Sidebottom who wore a giant fake head when performing weird music which , quite frankly (see what I did there), I did not understand. The story follows an aspiring musician who finds himself pulled in to Frank’s band. They hole themselves away in the woods to record their album and nothing much happens. It’s honest, funny, sad , and you should watch it. 

Read ‘An Untamed State’ by R.Gay .

Ever since reading Bad Feminist I have been waiting for her next book to come out. I’m still reading it but so far so good. Be warned though if you’re expecting a repeat of Bad Feminist-y vibes, this is totally different and is about a woman kidnapped in Haiti.

Listen to these Podcasts:

Last year it was avocados, this year I’m all about podcasts . They are my new thing. 

If you’re a podcast newbie , here are my favourites so far : 

Serial – because who doesn’t love a good story about crime, innocence and an unfair justice system!?

Call Your Girlfriend – two friends and feminists talking about social media, being ‘diagnosed’ with menstruation, race, what an asshole the pope is , and everything inbetween. 

Another Round – two friends and feminists (yes there’s a trend in my listening) talking about racism, sexism, popular culture, everything. 

This American Life – the podcast that has it all , because there are over 500 episodes dating back to the 90s. 

All of these podcasts are free online , otherwise if you have an ‘Apple-anything’ product you can also search for them in your Podcast app. 

In other news :

  
I got to vote yesterday for the first time ever in my ten years of being in this country. For those who have not experienced it , it is mostly quite dull and there are no snacks offered in the poll stations (for anyone who was wondering).

Have a good weekend wherever you all are !

Posted in Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Miscellaneous, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

The Avengers : Age of Ultron review 

 Worth seeing !

Joss Whedon has done it again with this sequel to the first Avengers movie and it is as witty and thrilling as the first, if not more. 

The cinema was full down to the very last seat next to mine , which was occupied by a little girl who wouldn’t stopped complaining about how boring the movie was . (I’m pretty sure she was the only one who felt this way. I tripped her on her way to the toilet . Not sorry ) 

 

In this sequel , the Avengers team up once again to go against new baddie Ultron ; a super computer determined to destroy Earth. The same old special effect tricks are applied , buildings are blown up, destroyed, etc, but it doesn’t get boring. 

There were some new faces and we get our first look at the new set of Avengers including the Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver and Vision (played quite well but all too briefly by Paul Bettany) . 
All in all, a great experience minus that annoying child. 

Next on my watch list is next years’ Batman vs Superman movie . Why do we have to wait so long for these things?

 
In other news , we have started our next house project. 

   
The mission? To get our cat to build a garage. 

   

He’s doing quite well so far.

 

Posted in Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Miscellaneous, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

Focus

Hello friends,

If you’re looking for a light movie which you will forget the next day , go and see Focus ! It’s the shiny new movie with beefy Will Smith and a bunch of other people ( you don’t really care for their names do you?).

Smith plays a con artist who falls in love with another con artist, and then they spend the rest of the movie playing cons on each other. Are they having coffee or are they stealing each others watches?  

Here's everyone acting very tense.
Here’s everyone acting very tense.

There are a few funny moments but mostly it doesn’t make for memorable viewing.

My other Focus this month (see what I did there?) will be to start running again and to generally improve fitness from the last couple of months. My last steady stint of running was last years’ British 10k in July ; one week of not running turned into two weeks, and then eventually all of the weeks, coupled with more than occasional bad food choices. So I’m writing this down because promising to do something to a world of strangers is the first step.

In other news, Birdman basically won all of the Oscars and I’m pretty sure my review had something to do with it . I did say it would be the best of 2015 . So pleased.

Enjoy the first week of March and the beginning of Spring !

Posted in Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

The amazing Birdman

Hello everybody,

I wondered how to start off the first post of the year and I think it’s reasonable to go with a review of Birdman , which is the best movie of 2015. Yes , we are 5 days in to the new year but trust me this is about as good as it will get with cinema this year.

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Alejandro González Iñárritu ( nope, never heard of him either ) , known also for directing 21 grams and Babel ( you’re welcome ) , directs an impressive cast through this story of a failing actor who directs his own cast in a broadway play which he hopes will be his next big break. As opening night approaches, our main character Riggan (Michael Keaton) starts to unravel and his relationship with everyone around him follows suit.

Iñárritu uses some clever camera tricks to make it look as though the movie was filmed in a single long take. The whole thing starts to look like the actors are improvising (and improvising brilliantly) , and you’re never quite sure what will happen next. The characters go from their dressing rooms and on to the theatre stage and it’s occasionally not clear whether they are practicing their lines or really yelling at each other in ‘real’ life.

Basically , the rest of cinematic 2015 will be one big disappointment once you get your eyes on this.

Go before you miss the chance to see it on a big screen !

 

 

 

 

Posted in Cinema, Comedy, Humour, Life, Movie reviews, Movies, Reviews

Bored of the Rings

Yesterday saw the release of the final movie in the Hobbit trilogy. Crowds gathered to watch the spectacle and I went along because :

– The dragon Smaug left us all hanging in the last movie ( If you don’t remember, he was just about to set fire to a town made entirely of wood and then THE END ).

– Impressive battle formations

– The elves are attractive

And since I have obviously started to watch these movies for all the wrong reasons, I’m glad they’re finally over.

On the plus side, it sets the scene very well for sitting down to watch your first Lord of the Rings movie with a nice bowl of popcorn; Bilbo Baggins returns to his home in the Shire and starts writing his book. As he finishes he gets a visit from Gandalf, and the rest is history.

Fans of the books and movies will know the Silmarillion is now rumoured to be adapted to the big screen, with some saying it will be a 72-film extravaganza beginning in 2016 and ending in 2160. Yes , you will actually die before seeing the last of all this.

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Enjoy your weekend folks 🙂